Match Details: 02/01/2012
Exeter City 1-1 Yeovil Town
npower League One
Yeovil Goals: Andy Williams (40)
Yeovil Line-Up: 1. Rene Gilmartin, 2. Luke Ayling, 3. Nathan Jones, 4. Bondz N'Gala, 5. Paul Huntington, 6. Dominic Blizzard, 7. Andy Williams, 9. Steve MacLean, 10. Gavin Williams, 14. Max Ehmer, 29. Jonathan Obika,
Subs: 17. Alan O'Brien, 18. Kieran Agard, 21. Gavin Massey, 24. Gareth Stewart, 37. Conor Clifford
Substitutes Used: Conor Clifford for Dominic Blizzard (74 mins), Kieran Agard for Steve MacLean (85 mins)
Bookings: Steve MacLean (Foul, 18), Gavin Williams (Ungentlemanly Conduct, 54), Max Ehmer (Foul, 62), Andy Williams (Foul, 70)
Yeovil Town let a goal lead slip this afternoon, as they picked up a point at St James Park this afternoon. In what was a must-not-lose match for both sides down towards the wrong end of League One, Andy Williams looked to have put the Glovers on their way five minutes before the break through his close range header. But as the second half wore on, the home side took command of the game, and Richard Logan equalised 15 minutes from time to give a 1-1 score, and leave both sides more or less where they were when the day started, with both sides on either side of the dividing relegation line.
The Glovers went into the match making two changes to their starting line-up, with left-back Nathan Jones getting his first game time since the November 5th trip to Chesterfield. He replaced Conor Clifford, with Max Ehmer being moved from left-back into a defensive midfield role. Up front, Steve MacLean replaced Kieran Agard, with the Scotsman fitting into the hole in a 4-4-1-1 - the formation chosen for the start of 2011, just twelve months ago.
The match opened up with Exeter almost taking the lead within three minutes of the start. Playing with a three-pronged attack, striker Daniel Nardiello's cross into the box was met by midfielder James Dunne, whose shot hit the crossbar, giving the Glovers an early escape. At the other end, a Gavin Williams free kick went over the defensive wall, but also over the bar.
It was a scrappy opening 25 minutes or so, with neither side really getting control of the game, often conceding a number of free kicks around the edge of the box, that ended in defensive headers to keep the scores level. Gradually though, the Glovers were the team who got on top of the game. Luke Ayling's free kick was flicked on by Paul Huntington into the path of Steve MacLean, who lifted the ball over the advancing Artur Krysiak, but also onto the top of the crossbar and for a goal kick.
Next Jonathan Obika had appeals for a penalty when he tumbled under a challenge from Steve Tully, only for referee Steve Tanner to wave play on. A minute later Paul Huntington headed wide as Yeovil finally began to warm things up. They got their reward five minutes before the break, when a Nathan Jones corner was headed towards goal by Huntington, with Andy Williams on hand to nudge home a classic poacher's goal from close range and to put the Glovers a goal up.
That goal seemed to make the home crowd restless, and understandably the Glovers looked more confident, as the finished the half in style, with the Grecians early threat apparently nullified as the teams turned around for the second period. That started in even fashion - rather too even as referee Steve Tanner booked Gavin Williams for a dive, and then played fair by booking Daniel Nardiello for a dive. As usual, the Glovers seemed to be clocking up the cards, picking up another four today, and with Steve MacLean having to do some serious haggling with the match official to avoid himself getting a second yellow for a late tackle.
Those flying feet seemed to get the home crowd going, and turned the second half into a feisty affair, where the Grecians fans had been previously grumbling about their side, even if Daniel Nardiello appeared to have put his boots on the wrong way round at half time, slicing a shot towards the corner flag to the delight of the travelling Glovers army.
Matters began to unravel rapidly though, when Dominic Blizzard pulled up with a hamstring injury with 15 minutes remaining. He had to be replaced by Conor Clifford, and the Glovers seemed to go into their shells. Grecians substitute Guillem Bauza had been highly influential during the second period, and he set up the equalising goal, slipping the ball through to Richard Logan, as a static Yeovil defence failed to pick up both players on a run, and Logan slotted past Rene Gilmartin for what was on the growing balance of play a deserved equaliser.
That provoked a rearguard action from the Glovers, with Conor Clifford looking nervy and lacking confidence, giving the ball away on a number of occasions. There was nearly a bigger howler though, as Rene Gilmartin's sliced clearance came off the back of Nathan Jones, with the ball rebounding over his own crossbar for a corner. Gilmartin flapped somewhat at the resultant corner, whilst Guillem Bauza nearly won it for Exeter as his shot beat Gilmartin comfortably, but also beat the far post, as Yeovil survived four nervous added minutes to at least take a point from the game.
A game in which the Glovers were either equal to or better than Exeter for a good 60 minutes, should have seen them home with all three points. But like so many games this season, the final period of the match was all about a rearguard defensive action, and in the end the soaked Glovers fans on the away terrace were relieved to actually come out with a point, even though it should have been all three. That keeps Yeovil in the relegation zone, and with no game next Saturday, and a difficult visit to Bramall Lane as their next fixture, they will do well to climb out of it in the next couple of weeks. A point isn't a disaster, but given their position 60 minutes into the match, it has to be seen as two dropped.
Link: 2011-12 Latest League One Table.
Final Score: Exeter City 1 Yeovil Town 1.
Scorers: Andy Williams (0-1, 40 mins), Richard Logan (1-1, 75 mins)
Exeter City: (4-3-3)
1. Artur Krysiak
2. Steve Tully 5. Troy Archibald-Henville 6. Richard Duffy 11. Scott Golbourne
4. James Dunne 8. David Noble 7. Liam Sercombe
35. Jake Taylor 20. Richard Logan 10. Daniel Nardiello
40. Lenny Pidgeley (GK) 19. John O'Flynn 21. Guillem Bauza (49 mins for Jake Taylor) 24. Elliott Frear (82 mins for Daniel Nardiello) 26. Scot Bennett
Yeovil Town: (4-4-1-1)
1. Rene Gilmartin
2. Luke Ayling 4. Bondz N'Gala 5. Paul Huntington 3. Nathan Jones
10. Gavin Williams 6. Dominic Blizzard 14. Max Ehmer 7. Andrew Williams
9. Steven MacLean
29. Jonathan Obika
24. Gareth Stewart (GK) 17. Alan O'Brien 18. Kieran Agard (85 mins for Steve MacLean) 21. Gavin Massey 37. Conor Clifford (74 mins for Dominic Blizzard)
Exeter Bookings: Daniel Nardiello (diving, 56 mins), Richard Logan (foul, 69 mins)
Yeovil Bookings: Steve MacLean (foul, 18 mins), Gavin Williams (diving, 54 mins), Max Ehmer (foul, 62 mins), Andy Williams (foul, 70 mins)
Referee: Steve Tanner (Somerset). Assistants: Andrew Bennett (Devon) and Richard Martin (Weston-super-Mare). Fourth Official: Lee Swabey (Devon).
Attendance: 5,912 (including 693 Yeovil fans)